Creating a great job advert is not only about attracting the right candidates for your role; it is to create excitement about your company and work to enhance your brand awareness. There are plenty of ways to get a job advert wrong, like filling it with indecipherable corporate jargon or leaving out basic information, such as the salary or job location. There are also some fairly basic rules to follow that will help you present your job in the best possible light. These are briefly given below.

If you have a vacancy at your company and want to be sure of attracting the best possible candidate, talk to one of our recruitment team at First Base for some expert advice on creating a compelling job advert and effectively marketing your position. We tell it as it is – and if we understand, from our dealings with you that you are keen to invest in staff, promote from within and can offer some flexibility, it helps us to attract the right people to your team.

1) Getting the details right

In order to serve its function, a job advert needs to include the following basic information. This should ideally be included in the following order, in the most succinct way possible:

  • Full job title
  • Description of your company
  • Candidate specifications. Be clear about what you’re looking for, in bullet point form if possible.
  • The qualifications and experience you are looking for. Make this a minimum benchmark and don’t set the attainments any higher than is necessary. Be clear whether any qualification you mention is essential or optional.
  • Job description
  • Location
  • Salary and benefits

2) Keep it the right length

There needs to be a fine balance between fitting in all the required information and making the advert too long. As a rule of thumb, no job advert should be more than 700 words in length, and should be a lot shorter if possible. Lengthy job adverts could suggest a workplace that is stifling and preoccupied with unnecessary detail. Make your advert short and to the point, and you are more likely to come across as a dynamic, efficient employer.

3) Balance your requirements

When setting out your candidate specifications, make it a balanced list between essential and desirable requirements. Think about this carefully and prioritise what you genuinely need from your candidate to do the job. A shortlist of three essential requirements and three desirable characteristics gives you something to aim for.

4) Promote your company!

Here is your opportunity to shine. Set out some compelling reasons why a candidate would want to work for you, over and above the salary and benefits. Here you can talk about your company’s reputation, projects you’ve worked on, your friendly team, career prospects, exciting company culture and so on.

5) Use images

Bear in mind that your job advert is likely to appear on a page (on or offline) with dozens of other similar positions. Using images is a proven and simple way of making your advert stand out to the right audience. So to get increased views, select one or more relevant images to go along with your advert. Try to avoid using stock images if you can, as other businesses will have chosen the same graphics.

Recruiting for a new position is a conversation between yourself and your ideal candidate. Creating your job advert is your means of initiating first contact with a future employee, so it helps to make a great first impression and attract the attention of the best candidates.

Tricia Hay

Tricia Hay is Owner, Director of First Base Employment Limited